With health care spending pending accounting for 18% of America’s GDP, it’s no wonder that Google, Amazon, Microsoft, Salesforce, IBM, GE and others are diving head first into the sector.

Simultaneously, traditional players such as payers, hospitals, health systems, PBMs, and others know change is coming and are quickly adding technology to compete.

Lastly, entrepreneurs understand that the health system is broken. Medical records are often still transmitted via fax (!), doctors can’t easily determine which drugs are covered on a patient’s insurance plan or what their out of pocket costs are, and terabytes of data remain trapped in silos. These entrepreneurs see a system in need of disruption and are seeking to become tomorrow’s leaders.

What’s one thing all three groups share? They know that efficient use of data and analytics are the key to success and are looking for marketing and communications partners who share their passion for using data and analytics to solve business problems and drive growth.

And we work with a lot of them. For example:

  • Start-up disrupting antiquated health care billing and payments systems in healthcareW2O is helping this innovative company cut through competitive jargon and drive awareness and sales with chief financial officers at leading healthcare provider organizations and medical groups. The company is focused not just on business growth but on evolving the patient experience across the patient journey.
  • Growing SaaS B2B Company: Looking to target CIOs at large payers, W2O has helped this company grow by defining and highlighting an existing problem and providing awareness of our client’s solution to the right audience. Over a 12-month period, the client has increased its user base by more than 50 percent for its multi-million dollar product.
  • Large, Entrenched Tech Player Entering Health Care: Moving from mainframes into healthcare, the company faced the challenge of speaking to a new audience. With W2O’s expertise in health care and technology, we helped guide the established company into a new growth space for the company.
  • Established, Fortune 25 Health Care Company: Looking to increase sales among health care decision makers, W2O conducted analytics to determine the best way to reach this niche audience and drove a successful earned media program highlighting the client’s innovative digital tools for consumers.

Business leaders rely on data to make important decisions every day.  At W2O we do the same with a pioneering team of 100+ data scientists that arm the companies we work with the information and insights they need to make decisions that impact critical business goals – from entering the healthcare sector for the first time to targeting chief information officers to creating a go-to market strategy for a product aimed at the C-suite executives in the provider and payer companies.

We use our deep knowledge of the healthcare space, proprietary database mapping the one million plus people active in the health care ecosystem and advanced analytics, we can find the health care audiences important to you, determine what messages resonate with them and execute a data-driven marketing and communications campaigns to help you meet your business objectives.

Forward-thinking brands partner with us. Are you ready to join them?

If you’re interested in learning about W2O, check out our About and Healthcare page.

Want to chat? Drop us a line.

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Communicating as a human being rather than a marketer is paramount in healthcare. As an industry, implementing empathy within our communications, will only build stronger communities, systems, and connections.

This week’s guest, Larry Dobrow, is Senior Editor at one of the preeminent healthcare marketing publications in our industry, Medical Marketing & Media (MM&M). He’s incredibly well versed as a writer and deeply understands the nuances and complexities of the healthcare industry. We discussed how to market with empathy within healthcare, data privacy, the future of the industry, and the Boss. Take a listen below.

Don’t miss an episode of What2Know, subscribe to our podcast on iTunesStitcher or Spotify!

If you’re interested in learning about W2O, check out our About and Healthcare page.

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Finding new healthcare providers after buying your new house.

My husband and I just closed on our new home a week ago. While we initially sifted through the pages of paperwork associated with buying a home, I gave only a little thought to the need for us to find a new pediatrician for our daughter, a new primary care doctor for my husband and I, a dermatologist, a OB-GYN, a dentist and more.  With the move now in full gear, I find myself overwhelmed when it comes to the task of finding healthcare support in our new community.

To top off the complexity of this change, there’s the burdensome issue of accessing the electronic health records that house all the critical information about our past, our present and future healthcare data. Seemingly small details when we’re all healthy but a critical journey map and treasure trove of insights most likely down the line as we age.

All of this got me thinking about how complex healthcare is and the massive hurdles that remain for consumers despite the digital transition we’re in the midst of experiencing. Barriers that include:

  • Safely sharing my own and my family’s personal health records with a provider that is not part of a my current network.  Options include manually downloading personal health records via zip folder or printing. Both options generally make me feel unsafe given the sensitive nature of this personal information. You can also share your record with another physician through CDA format.  I am thankful to work in healthcare otherwise, CDA would be a useless acronym to me.
  • Easily identifying reliable, proven and trust-worthy providers that are covered by our insuranceThere are tools like Yelp, Healthgrades, Zocdoc and government-backed Hospital Compare. My main issue with all of these is there is no all-in-one solution that allows you to make a decision based on who is in your network, nearby and – even better – recommended not only by strangers but by people I know and trust as part of my own community. As a result, I found myself leaning toward the community Facebook groups for mothers in my new town. Hardly scientific or streamlined but it somehow felt more reliable.
  • Tackling fragmentation and lost time across the care continuum. You know what I love about Target?  I can take my two-year old there and buy almost everything I need – whether it’s Goldfish snacks for my daughter, diapers or cat food.  It’s a one-stop-shop which makes my life easier and maximizes the small amount of time I have as a working mom.  As we move further outside the city limits of Boston, I know my free time will be further reduced.  This got me thinking about the time to go to travel to appointments, the myriad of specialist appointments throughout the year, my desire for deeper insight on nutrition that our providers could not offer me or my daughter without – you guessed – another specialty appointment with a nutritionist. While I highly value specialty care, it got me thinking that there would be great value is something like all-in-one care, or at least enabling patients to schedule back-to-back appointments and also have more real-time access with experts that provide something other than sick care.

Like most things in healthcare, there is no easy fix to these vexing problems. But there is hope as big entrants like Walmart and Amazon and disruptors like One Medical and Forward take new, technology-driven and people-friendly approaches to creating next-generation healthcare solutions. I just hope some of these solutions are fully vetted and available when we make our next move and have to start the healthcare research endeavor yet again!

If you’re interested in learning about W2O, check out our About and Healthcare pages.

Want to chat? Drop us a line.

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It’s clear the world of digital health is innovating and evolving at an incredibly rapid rate. In order for the industry to continue to excel, leveraging data to improve patient outcomes is paramount. This week’s guest understands this implicitly and was kind enough to sit down and chat with me during the Health Evolution Summit.

Sean Duffy, Co-Founder & CEO of Omada Health, discusses all things digital health, The Animal Collective, and you’ll never guess which world record he broke in college. Take a listen below.

Don’t miss an episode of What2Know, subscribe to our podcast on iTunesStitcher or Spotify!

If you’re interested in learning about W2O, check out our About and Healthcare page.

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Healthcare and technology undoubtedly are closely tied. So much so, that their relation to one another will be key in each industries’ future. This week Dr. Leonard Y. Lee, Chief of Cardiothoracic Surgery at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital, and Professor, joins What2Know to discuss.

Dr. Lee and I chat about the connection between health and tech, the American Heart Association, bond over our love for food, plus find out what music he listens to in the operating room. Take a listen below.

Don’t miss an episode of What2Know, subscribe to our podcast on iTunesStitcher or Spotify!

If you’re interested in learning about W2O, check out our About and Healthcare pages.

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Keeping people healthy and making it a seamless process is essential in today’s healthcare system. Glen Tullman, CEO of Livongo, understands this implicitly, and is focused on empowering people to live their lives on the go, despite their chronic condition.

This week Glen sits down with host, Aaron Strout, to share his wealth of knowledge and the role we can all play. Plus, he dives into his passion for tea and Bruce Springsteen. Take a listen below.

If you’re interested in learning about W2O, check out our About or Healthcare pages.

Don’t miss an episode of What2Know, subscribe to our podcast!

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With the HIMSS speaking submission deadline just under a week away – July 16 to be exact – many in the healthcare and health technology sectors are in the throes of planning for the big event taking place in February 2019. However, speaking slots aren’t the only component that companies should start considering so they can make a valuable splash at the conference. An event like HIMSS requires a lot of time, resources and planning to ensure you’re hitting the right audiences and standing out among the more than 1,300 other companies in attendance.

Making it to the Main Stage

Securing a speaking slot at HIMSS in and of itself is no easy feat. The speaking lineup is traditionally light on vendors. Vendors can and should turn to customers using their technology and services to ensure their speaking application is considered. Working with a customer on a speaking application can be especially time-consuming considering that approvals are required from both sides of the aisle before anything can be submitted. Once you do identify a vendor-neutral speaking partner, what makes an abstract that will resonate with judges and ultimately HIMSS attendees?

HIMSS outlines exactly how they evaluate proposals. We’ve also learned a thing or two from our time working with clients on HIMSS abstracts and know that a compelling abstract really boils down to two main components. One, timeliness. As HIMSS says itself, there is no substitute for timeliness. Why now? Are other organizations currently facing similar challenges? Can they take something away from our session to apply at their own organization today? The second is data or hard ROI. Talking the talk is great but a successful abstract always highlights key data and ROI to show the “before and after” and how a specific service or approach had a real impact on business value.

Knowing Who Influences Your Audience

A common question we get from clients heading into HIMSS is: how do I attract and engage my target audiences? The first step is to understand who is influencing these individuals. How do we solve this million-dollar question? We look to data for guidance. More specifically, we examine public data through the lens of the MDigitalLife Health Ecosystem, which maps online behavior and digital footprints of more than 870,000 stakeholders worldwide, including doctors, patients, industry CXOs, hospitals, payers, technology vendors, advocacy organizations, media and analysts among many others.

Once we have this data in hand, we can better identify the topics that are top of mind (as we did for HIMSS18) and the influencers who play a part in shaping perceptions in the space. This critical insight guides overall HIMSS19 strategy to ensure we’re hitting the bloggers, reporters, executives and more whom your audience trusts and follows. Once we have these influencers on our side and aligned with our value, they can help inform our target audience.

Standing Out Amidst a Sea of Competitors

Relationship building is the name of the game at HIMSS. To get the attention of those who matter most at this crowded venue, it’s important to personalize events and content based on unique audience needs. Organizations must think beyond booth décor and the HIMSS-secured speaking slot. A successful HIMSS is all about tailoring an event(s) with the right mix of people and offering educational and engaging conversation amongst peers and influencers.

During HIMSS18, W2O worked closely with a cognitive technology provider to drive industry thought leadership and spotlight key customer stories during an invite-only event session. The team used analytics to determine the influencers best fit to invite to the session and help guide a personalized content and digital strategy based on attendees’ preferences. These efforts supported in-person connections with leading thought leaders in the space, solid earned media coverage resulting in 214,000 impressions and trending social media conversations related to the client.

Although HIMSS is seven months and counting away, your planning for HIMSS19 should be in full swing. Starting early, aligning on big details and setting up a detailed and action-oriented plan now means that your organization will be on the right foot as HIMSS19 approaches.


Healthcare is nuanced, complex, and rapidly evolving. What does this combination mean for how the industry is evolving and being reshaped? This week’s guest Karen Ignagni, CEO & President of EmblemHealth, lends her expertise on the subject.

Karen is incredibly well versed in the health space, from being one of America’s top health insurance lobbyist to her current role at EmblemHealth, she understands the plethora of influences involved with healthcare. During our chat she discusses how the story of healthcare is being rewritten, the nuances of the system, and America’s favorite pastime. Take a listen below.

 If you’re interested in learning about W2O, check out our About or Healthcare pages. Don’t miss an episode of What2Know, subscribe to our podcast!

I’m old enough to remember when support groups for various health issues were a local affair, advertised in agate type in the newspaper and drawing a handful of individuals to church basements and elementary school cafeterias.

When the Internet emerged, one of the first hyped health applications of the World Wide Web was the idea that patient support could be moved online, and peer-led education and aid – freed from geographic and temporal constraints — would flourish.

The premise behind that promise turned out to be, at best, overstated. Especially in the early days, those communities were not particularly easy to find, particularly social or particularly stable. Disconnecting the phone, plugging in the modem, and waiting for the static-and-beep of dial-up internet wasn’t a guaranteed ticket to a Shangri-La of personal connections.

But there was, from the earliest days, a notable exception: the diabetes community, particularly the community of people with type 1 diabetes, managed to create safe spaces on the web early on, and those early social efforts have tended to stick around. Many of those who established beachheads in the early days of blogging are still out there, forming the core of a group known as the Diabetes Online Community.

But the D.O.C., arguably the most successful constellation of voices in any therapeutic area, didn’t arise fully formed. It had seemed that way to me, but we at W2O Group knew that there had to be a deeper story.

We decided that we needed an in-depth look at the backstory, a Social Diabetes Project, and reached out to Kerri Sparling. Sparling has written the blog Six Until me for well over a decade, giving her a unique vantage point to craft an oral history of the D.O.C.

Download Report Now

But what Kerri delivered, and what makes up the core of the first-ever Social Diabetes project, is an oral history that goes back well beyond the birth of the blog. In their own voices, Kerri has excavated the foundations of one of the web’s great collectives, and we’re excited to present it here.

The D.O.C. evolution isn’t over; year-over-year, conversation online about diabetes are only increasing, pulling in an ever-wider group of topics that has expanded from a narrow, blog-based focus on diabetes management to one where issues of diversity, advocacy, and technical know-how are a part of the conversation on every platform.

Reading Kerri’s work, we came away convinced that understanding the D.O.C. history helps shine light not only on the diabetes community, but that it illuminates the broader processes and motivations under which individuals have – and will – come online.

The report, in PDF form, can be downloaded here. We’re grateful to not only Kerri, but the countless individuals who shared their stories with her to make this oral history possible.

If you’re interested in learning about W2O, check out our About and Healthcare pages.

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